12 Hobbies That You Can Turn Into Jobs
Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.
If you aren’t sure what you want to be when you grow up, start by sitting back and thinking for a sec about the things you love to do in your free time. Whether it involves the arts, sports, video games, or activism, chances are the stuff you love to do can be repurposed into a real-deal career in the future. And why not make a little money doing something you’re going to spend your time doing anyway?
Our best piece of career advice is this: do you, and that means sticking to what you love at all costs.
- Photography — Professional photographers are undoubtedly some of the most in-demand creative professionals, and it’s not hard to see why. They’re needed for everything from product photo shoots to weddings and birthday parties. And you don’t need a degree to be a pro photog, either. A high-quality portfolio showcasing your skills — plus a little bit of business and marketing know-how — is enough to get your name out there and jumpstart your photography career.
- Playing Sports — There are so many job titles that involve sports, and the vast majority of them are NOT “pro athlete.” Indeed, sports lovers can build a career in tons of things involving sports and fitness. Some of the biggest areas for this interest are journalism, physical education, coaching, athletic training, athletic directing, sports medicine, managing, and marketing. The field is truly wide-open.
- Writing — Fancy yourself a bit of a wordsmith? Amazing! That means you’re already well on your way to turning something you love into a serious career, and you don’t have to go committing to writing a lengthy novel or becoming a newspaper reporter, either. Writers do everything from crafting social media posts and writing fun blogs (like this one) to teaching at the high school and college level.
- Drawing — Same deal here! Those daydream doodles may have been preparing you for your future career path all along. For artists and people who love drawing, the job market is truly your oyster. Become a graphic designer, multimedia artist, animator, architect, fashion designer, or illustrator if you love to draw.
- Playing Video Games — Those video games are not going to make themselves, people. Yep, plenty of gamers find lifelong careers in this industry, doing everything from designing, conceptualizing, and producing brand-new games to marketing and writing about them. Yes, there is such a thing as a video game tester, too, and they make an average of $54,833 per year playing video games. Sign us up!
- Playing Music — If music is your passion, you can take it in so many different directions that it might actually be hard to pick one. Musicians may find jobs performing — church organists, theater pit musicians, studio musicians, symphony players, etc. — or teaching youngsters and students how to play. Have a bit of business sense, too? You might consider a field in music production or marketing.
- Social Activism — Anyone who spends time collecting signatures for petitions, making signs for demonstrations, or calling their congresspeople to push for big change should definitely consider a career in politics or activism. From lawyers to judges to city council members, our society needs all kinds of justice-seekers! Social work, community organizing, environmental conservation, or working in the Peace Corps are all great career fields for the socially active.
- Cooking — Every city, state, and country has a sustained need for food service professionals of all sorts, including cooks and bakers. There are a number of ways you can go about becoming a chef, but most people start with a trade school or culinary school. Depending on where you live, you could earn an average of about $50,000 per year as a professional cook or chef.
- Animals — If all things relating to animals spark a deep joy inside you, you may just be a future vet, vet tech, groomer, or animal rescuer! But be aware: Animal professionals don’t just spend all day snuggling cute pets (although plenty of petting is required). A deep understanding of animal care and health is needed — and health-related pet stuff isn’t always easy for the pet-obsessed — so some animal lovers may not make the best vets or vet techs.
- Babysitting — If you spent your teenage and college years babysitting, you probably love being around kids, and that’s a great thing to consider when deciding where to take your career. People who love to babysit may find rewarding roles in teaching, tutoring, daycare, and pediatric medicine, among other job roles.
- Planning Parties — Are you the person in your friend group who’s always planning the get-togethers and dreaming up unique new theme parties? Are you crazy about turning basic spaces into vibrant, on-theme party venues? Do you obsess over details like food, drinks, and invitations? Then you’re a natural-born event planner, and there’s plenty of work for you in media, public relations, and hospitality.
- Interior Design — If your childhood bedroom or dorm room looks perfectly curated and put-together — or at least like a carefully designed representation of who you are — then you might have a knack for interior design. Interior designers and decorators make homes and businesses look amazing with furniture, lighting, accents, and colors, and it may just come naturally to you.
Should You Turn Passion Into Work?
They say it’s never a job when you’re doing what you love, but should you really turn a hobby into work? Honestly, it totally depends on you, your goals, and your work.
Some people find that their craft is better left as a hobby, without any of the constraints that come with clients, bosses, and deadlines. Other people can’t imagine spending their days doing anything but the thing they love the most in the world. A good way to test what kind of hobby-turned-employee you are? Give it a go part-time or on a freelance basis before making it your full-blown job.
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